The September community technology preview (CTP) of F# marks an important step along the path to integrate the F# language into Visual Studio.
F#, a functional programming language for the .NET platform, combines the strengths of functional programming with the breadth of frameworks and tools available with .NET and Visual Studio.
F# has appeal for developers who work with scientific and technical computing. But mainstream developers can take advantage of the power of F# too. Ted Neward provides a tutorial for those wanting to add F# in an article in CoDE Magazine F# 101. He explains, "F# has long been a “secret weapon” in the arsenal of .NET programmers for doing statistical- and mathematical-heavy coding. More recently, however, a growing number of developers have begun to see the inherent advantages implicit in writing functional code, particularly in the areas of concurrency."
The team announced the release in a blog entry, The F# September 2008 CTP is now available! The release includes:
- Broadly improved Visual Studio 2008 integration, which allows F# users to scale from scripting and explorative development up to large-scale component and application design - all within Visual Studio.
- Improvements to the F# language and libraries to make them simpler and more regular.
- An exciting new language feature, Units of Measure, which extends F#’s inference and strong typing to floating point data.
In addition, a new F# Development Center has been launched on MSDN. The F# September CTP is available here. To learn more about F#, see Don Syme's Weblog on F# Language and Related Topics.